hen it comes to handbuilt custom frames, Italy is a true superpower. The country has always had a wealth of artisans, creating masterpieces in steel and titanium, and while the carbon curves of the Deanima Unblended #1 may not make us nostalgic for the glory days of Italian bikes, it does represent Italian framebuilding getting back to its roots.
‘We’re a company about passion and we’re doing this because we like making bikes,’ says co-founder Matt Cazzaniga. Deanima produces its frames entirely in-house, and Cazzaniga is one of three creators of the brand, along with Antonio Attanasio and Gianni Pegoretti.
The latter is the brother of Dario Pegoretti, who is famed for his custom steel frames. They worked together for some time but eventually went their separate ways, and Gianni branched into carbon production with San Patrignano, a charity that trains recovered drug addicts in framebuilding. It was there that Pegoretti met his star pupil, Attanasio, and together with former Pegoretti sales agent Cazzaniga they formed Deanima.
The Unblended #1 is Deanima’s first bike, although it has undergone a few tweaks since it debuted in 2013. The frame is a tube-to-tube construction similar to almost every custom carbon frame on the market, but Deanima goes to greater lengths than most in building its own tubes, not just wrapping them together.
‘We make all the tubes ourselves except for the seat tube, which is a very standard tube and so not one we see much advantage in making in-house. All the remaining tubes, dropouts and even the brake bridge are formed and moulded by us,’ Cazzaniga says.
While many custom framebuilders would see this as an opportunity to boast of bespoke lay-ups and tuned ride quality, Cazzaniga squashes such thoughts: ‘I find it very hard to believe a bikebuilder looks at a rider and a request and simply says, “OK, I’ll take three layers of carbon out here and change the weave there.” It’s